Alvin Yellowhorse learned the silversmithing trade at an early age from his father, Frank Yellowhorse. He later mastered the techniques of cutting the small turquoise & other colorful stones into precise little pieces, which he assembles into intricate designs inspired by his Anasazi ancestors. This technique is called "Channel Inlay". This is a style of inlay where all the stones are cut & assembled together then ground flush before being highly polished. Alvin is credited for originating another style of inlay called "Corn Row Wave Inlay" in which the stones are individually cut & rounded over before setting them into a silver or gold bracelet, pendant, ring, or link bracelet. Corn Row Wave Inlay is much more time consuming since he has to completely finish each stone one at a time before placing them into the gold or silver setting.
There are no mass production techniques or assembly lines. His designs, although very contemporary, are enriched by Zuni, Hopi, & Anasazi influences, along with his own Navajo heritage. Alvin also receives inspiration from the ancient petroglyphs found along the canyon walls near his workshop. Alvin is forever amazing jewelry & art galleries with his new designs & techniques. Aside from being featured in several high-end galleries, Alvin was recognized by the Smithsonian Magazine in an article called "Tantalizing Turquoise" in their August 1999 issue, along with Art Book Arizona Magazine doing a profile on his life. Each year Alvin enters his jewelry into the Santa Fe Indian Market competition & has won several Blue Ribbons. His work can also be found at the annual Heard Museum competition in Phoenix, AZ.